Well wholly hell was that a bad game. Second in six that we had no chance to win but unlike the rusty opener this one is inexcusable. 43% possession and 36.97% expected goals for % is bad. What's worse is the 33% danger chances at 5 on 5 (6 for 12 against) is nearly double against what any other game saw (7 max before this).
1. The top line. Bert and Brome seem to be developing a chemistry that was held back by a certain shotblocker. Well it continued yesterday with Larks added to the line. 9.46 together with perfect 100% corsi with 10 for and zero against (say what). 2 danger chances for and 0 against. Clearly this is a thing that should continue. Brome was starting to put up 20-30's with crap but reunited with Bert and given a shot with Larkin clearly works. They didn't score but this is one experiment that must continue (watch Blash go back to the big line lol).
2. The 4th line. Hirose Nielsen and Smith has a solid 62.5% possession number with 2 danger for and 0 against. Coupled with the top line thats 4 of our 6 for and 0 of our 12 against. This line only got just over 4 minutes as why bother sticking with something that works. Nielsen in particular has been putting solid numbers wherever he gets placed. Again he is better than LGD and Filly. The reward for a game well played for Smith and Hirose is off to the taxi squad you go. Biega is better or something.
3. The PP. They actually tried something different (ie not predictable one timer setups to the same side over and over again) and scored. Yippee. The zone entries have actually been decent the past few games so if they stop being so predicable that PP might step up a bit.
1. The fucking coaching staff. Ryan and Mantha dominated the last game so this staff decided to split them up and give them both mentors. Fucking joke. Yes they both played like shit (we get to that) but as Kris Versteeg said on the radio this morning you don't coach Patrick Kane the same way you do Kris Versteeg. Some players get to colour outside the lines. Two offensive guys who put up an 88% expected goal rate with Ras and 72% with Larks last game need to colour a bit.
2. More coaching the lines. The Larks line got 9.46. Every other line got 5.24 and less. I'm not a guy who blames coaching all day but coaching was flat out stupid this weekend. Yeah we got COVID guys out but no need to blender out everything that does work a bit. Watch Brome removed from Larks line next game and ask yourself what the Wings analytics department and coaching staff is watching.
3. Mantha and a 5C. Mantha played like shit. Fluke clear stop caused a goal and then positional laziness caused another. That is not how he plays all the time. He's no Selke winner but he's better than people give him credit for. Part of this is likely feeling down about get assigned a mentor in LGD. That was a choice the coaching staff made to start the game and Mantha flat out said fuck it. He possibly saw AA go down this LGD to Filly slope. Either way the possession killer LGD and Names got a putrid 30% possession number in 5 minutes of 2 goal against crap. Yes Mantha needs huge blame and shame but enough with the 5C faceoff winner playing with good players and sucking the life out of them.
4. The other line of Filly goodness. Ryan after going one game (which he and Mantha dominated) without a goal was assigned his own mentor. He played over 9 minutes with Filly (5.24 with Ras and 3.45 with Hirose on the other wing). That resulted in 22% and 20% possession numbers and a 1 for 5 against high danger chance loss with 2 goals against. In summation 2 new mentor lines 0 goals for and 4 against. Don't get me wrong Ryan like Mantha deserves some blame as well. 3-13 on the corsi meter for 18%. Yikes
5. Ras was no good either. Totally watched a guy go past him to score. 15% possession with 3 for and 16 against. I'm hoping he was just sulking with Mantha and Ryan. Maybe the three of them should ask the coach why he's such a dumbass.
6. Bernier wasn't very good. B2B under average games by the tenders and the scores ran up. No coincidence that the danger chances rose in these two games to go with it. G and D don't play as well. Goals against go up.
Not a good game to reflect on as it's the first this year that truly looks like roughly 25 games went last year. There were a few positives to build on but Smith and Hirose were already sent down so apparently we are not interested in focusing on the positives. Maybe double down with more Filly and LGD spread around. If so don't expect Dallas to be any different. If the coaching staff gets out of the way; maybe we compete.
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